4 inaccurate takes about AI’s impact on PR

I shared my predictions about AI’s impact on PR this year and next.

Here are some of the objections I’ve heard and my rebuttals. Bear in mind that I’m focusing specifically on generative AI writing tools, the most famous of which is ChatGPT.

AI makes too many factual mistakes – look at what happened when CNET used it to write articles

OpenAI has been transparent that their model prioritizes natural language flow over factual accuracy. All AI-assisted writing needs to be fact-checked/edited, just like all human writing ought to be. But it’s still way faster to fact-check a blog post or news release than create it from nothing.

This tech would take jobs away from humans and that’s a bad thing so people will protest it and it will be stopped

The first half of this take is correct. Probably not widely this year, but definitely in the next 2-3 years, writing-intensive business will either contract or at least slow hiring. But this is not a moral issue – whether it is bad or good, right or wrong, is irrelevant. It’s going to happen. Your option is to figure out how AI PR writing tools can enhance your career instead of replace you.

I’m doing really well without this and it seems complicated and there might be some problems with it so nevermind, I’m good

This is a totally normal and natural response to any new technological development. I actually heard the same thing word for word:

  • In 2000 from a Fortune 500 VP of corp comm about email pitching (this was an outlier)
  • In 2010 from a Fortune 500 VP of corp comm about Facebook – this was actually not that unusual of a take among this cohort

Don’t think you’ve gotta throw away everything that got you here overnight. Just take baby steps to get over any barriers you’re putting in your way. If you haven’t yet, just go to chat.openai.com, set up an account, tell the tool “Write 10 headlines for a blog post about . . .” and just add in whatever you’re working on. You’ll never be the same :).

ChatGPT isn’t real AI, it hasn’t achieved general intelligence, it’s not going to replace Google, etc.

I don’t know and I don’t care. I’m not an analyst telling you whether to buy stock in Microsoft or Google. I’m a PR coach telling you how to be more effective at your job and deliver more value to your employer or clients. And we’re not talking about some future day – this change is already happening.

In the coming weeks and months I’ll have lots more for you about how to use free or cheap AI writing tools to enhance your PR results. In the meantime, please email and tell me:

  • A more specific concern or question you have about using AI in your work
  • Or, if you’re already on board, an example of how you have already put it to use

This article was originally published on February 1, 2023

Get Michael’s 5 Winning Subject-Line Formulas and best PR tips each week free!

Articles Right Form

This is the articles sidebar opt-in form and can be accessed under “Appearance” – “Widgets” – “Articles Sidebar” http://d.bbg.li/k8mDGs

Would you like to get the next article as soon as it goes live?

(I’ll also send you other weekly tips)

'Count Me In' article subfooter optin

This is in the footer of any articles and can be edited in the "Theme Options" and "Single Blog Form" tab: http://d.bbg.li/sbzf7x